Online Atlas > Colorado > Museums • Photographs
Colorado facts and history plus travel and tourism information.
Before Colorado's statehood was established on August 1, 1876, many Plains Native Americans lived on the region's eastern plains and followed buffalo herds. However, in 1858, gold was discovered in the Rocky Mountains, and a flux of settlers eventually forced the indigenous tribal people onto reservations. Mesa Verde National Park is one small reminder of some of the land's original inhabitants, preserving ancestral Pueblo cliff dwellings in Colorado's southwest corner.
Other national attractions include Dinosaur National Monument, where dinosaur fossils were discovered in 1909 by paleontologist Earl Douglass, and Rocky Mountain National Park, where Colorado's massive western mountain range is the focal point. As well as boosting the economy with precious metals, Colorado's Rocky Mountains lure skiers and snowboarders to the state's numerous ski resorts.
Colorado's major cities include the capital, Denver, and Colorado Springs; both settlements lie on the edge between the plains and the mountains.
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Colorado History and Geography